Scott, Jimmy [James] (Victor) [Little Jimmy Scott]
- Nina Sun Eidsheim
[James] (Victor) [Little Jimmy Scott]
(b Cleveland, OH, July 17, 1925). American jazz singer. Born with Kallmann Syndrome, which prevented his voice from changing at puberty, Scott was initially a teenage novelty act due to his small stature and ambiguously gendered voice. His career began in earnest at Harlem’s Baby Grand in the mid-1940s, where he impressed listeners including Billie Holiday and Doc Pomus. He had his first recorded hits as an unnamed vocalist on Lionel Hampton’s “Everybody’s Somebody’s Fool” (1950–52) and Charlie Parker’s “Embraceable You” (1950).
1962’s Falling in Love is Wonderful, produced by Ray Charles on Tangerine Records, was a pivotal career point for Scott. But because he was legally contracted to Savoy Records, the album was withdrawn, as was The Source (Atlantic, 1969). Scott then fell off the music world’s radar due to professional and personal obstacles, and turned to nonmusical work. Live appearances on Newark’s WBGO put him back on the map in ...